With more families finding their members scattered around the country, family reunions hold a greater significance now than ever. But this new family dynamic makes planning a reunion more logistically difficult, too. Before you plan your next clan get-together, check out these five ways to make it easier and more memorable.
1. Plan Ahead
Event experts suggest you begin planning your reunion at least six months out – even up to a year if family members will be traveling far distances. It’s a good idea to send out an informal questionnaire either by mail, email or social media to gauge interest and availability from everyone involved before any serious planning begins. One thing is nearly inevitable; you won’t find a date that will suit every single person, so once you’ve set a date, stick to it no matter what. It’s too difficult to reschedule venue and travel arrangements, and will wind up costing more if you do.
2. Pick the Perfect Place
You’ll want to take several considerations into account when choosing a venue. Locate a place that has a range of activities for all age groups. Parks, lakefronts and beaches make great destinations because they are usually easily accessible to family members with mobility issues, and have plenty of things for kids to keep them occupied. Even a larger city will have just the right mix of attractions to keep everyone entertained.
3. Let Rental Equipment Help
Once you’ve set the date and location of your reunion, plan a visit to your local special events rental facility. Not only will you find useful equipment such as tables, chairs and tents for rent, but you’ll find a whole host of other items that will enhance the fun factor of your reunion. How about a bouncy inflatable for the kids, or a karaoke machine that everyone will get a kick out of? If it’s a large gathering, a PA system, microphones and a podium might be needed. Your favorite event rental company will also have a wide variety of items that will make preparing and serving food easier, too.
4. Dream up Memorable Extras
Use your imagination to come up with some extra surprises that will make this a truly bonding family event. You could create a mini-newspaper that highlights the family’s most special milestones from the past year, or put together a family tree. Encourage everyone who will be attending to bring along a cherished family photo album or video to share, and be sure you have the right audio-visual equipment for displaying photos or videos.
5. Make Follow-up Part of the Fun
During the reunion, put someone in charge of documenting all the special moments you’re sure to have. Decide on a way to share photos and other memories of the event with family members once they’ve returned home. Don’t forget to get that group shot! It will be enjoyed by all generations for years to come.